April 25, 2011

Great advertising mix:ex- football player, Licor Beirão and politics!

From top to bottom: one of the new advertising posters, the censured poster and the most famous one.

Over a century ago this Licor Beirão sweet beverage was already being produced in Lousã (Coimbra's District). It's made from several different plants from Lousã's mountain and aromatic seeds imported from Turkey, India, Brazil, and Sri Lanka. The story is that a Port Wine salesman passing by fell in love with the local pharmacist's daughter and they got married. The pharmacist was selling natural liquors and this maybe was kind of usual in XIX century because my grandfather also runs a pharmacy and he also knew how to produce liquors. A new law then makes it forbidden to attribute medicinal properties to alcoholic drinks. The Port Wine traveler took at his charge the production of liquors. The name Licor Beirão comes from the region where a congress took place in 1929. Beirão is the native of Beira’s province. The liquor was then baptized to honor the region, the natives and the meeting that took place at Castelo Branco. José Carranca Redondo, an individual from Lousã, bought the factory and the secret and started to produce Licor Beirão with his wife with endless success. Understanding the importance of advertising he was one of the first to use outdoors. Some were not well accepted as that one considered indecent because it showed a like Rockwell illustration pin-up barely dressed and provocative sayings. He also runs an advertising company and even taught other companies the art of advertising. He died in 2005 but his family still keeps the business running.

In the past month of March, a press conference was held on the future of Sporting Club of Portugal Football team leadership. The ex-footballer Paulo Futre came out with a series of unusual ideas. Paulo Futre was once a gifted footballer. But his ideas can only be described as a source of the best recent national joke. He turned into an instant success due to Youtube, blogs and social networks videos diffusion. He made the entire country laugh. As a result, Futre was hired to be the face of the new advertising campaign to Licor Beirão. This was one of the best advertising moves I’ve seen. The slogans are solutions to the Portuguese undergoing crisis. All advertising concept is anchored on to the pre-wave electoral campaign we are living. They adapted the press conference phrases that made Futre famous. Futre is thus a kind of candidate who tries to sell their ideas to overcome the crisis and win elections. Posters are well produced. Yellow has always been the color associated with Futre as he once used to drive a yellow Porsche. On Facebook, there is a competition going on and the prize is a yellow Porsche. You just have to Like Licor Beirão’s Page and contribute to "The best Futre's idea to overcome the crisis. "

37 years after 25 April 1974 Carnation Revolution

Click to discover more!

Bellow red square with information and Mimi's photo, click Ver Galeria, on your left!

Today is Freedom Day. It’s a national holiday in Portugal. 37 years ago by sunrise, the Movement of the Armed Forces, or MFA, took control of Portugal's destiny. After almost five decades of dictatorship, MFA promised to restore civil liberties and hold general elections. The people longed for replacement of state institutions that included political police that imprisoned and tortured people. Six civilian were dead during the outburst. The 25 April coup became known as the Carnation Revolution. (Florists distributed the flowers they were selling to the military on the street.) It ended the longest dictatorship in Europe, the Estado Novo. The new regime pushed decolonization. Over the next few years Guiné -Bissau, Moçambique, Cabo Verde, São Tomé and Príncipe, and Angola became independent. Hundreds of political prisoners were released. A new era started. Portugal was on its way to democracy and modernization. (Video soundtrack is Grândola Vila Morena song by Zeca Afonso. I wrote about him here. )

The times following April 25, 1974, Carnation Revolution people painted street walls all over the country showing they were pleased with the changes. Conceição was a woman that believed in freedom. She was very active in publishing articles in the underground press. She fought the dictatorship regime since 1960 and was against the colonial war. Her friends called her Mimi. Conceição Neuparth (1926-2006) photographed and collected more than 500 photos.

April 24, 2011

Vinho Verde is a unique Portuguese product and you should try it!

Vinho Verde is a unique product. Portugal is the one place to find it. This great wine has a blending of aroma that makes it one of the most delicious natural beverages. Some of it can have light bubbles. I love to drink it very fresh in Summer days - 8-10º C is the ideal temperature. It's ideal to go with seafood. Most times I just pick a beer because it's less expensive. Vinho Verde is Medium in alcohol and has great digestive properties due to its freshness. In the market, you can find red and white wines. The reds are full-bodied wines with an intense color and a rosy or light red foam. The whites usually present a lemony or straw color. Verde is the Portuguese word for green. But Vinho Verde hasn't relation with the color. Verde also means not ripe. But that does not mean that this wine is made from unripened grapes. The main characteristic is that Vinho Verde should be drunk while it's still young. It will not get better as time goes by.

The Demarcated Region of Vinho Verde is located in the northwest of Portugal in an area traditionally known as Entre-Douro-e-Minho. Its limits are the Minho River in the North (border with Galicia), the mountainous areas in the East and South, forming the natural border between the Atlantic Entre-Douro-e-Minho and the Mediterranean inland regions, and the Atlantic Ocean as its western limit.

This is one of my favorites, I took a photo of the bottle to show you: Vinho Verde Muralhas de Monção. If you click on this link you can read all about it and see the local typical landscape.

If you want to select a drink for a Summer daylight meal, this white wine is a great option. We're not yet in Summertime but today we had good weather. I did not have an Easter traditional meal, I had fish instead.

April 22, 2011

Guiness World Records: Portuguese Bertrand is the longest running bookshop!

It has just been announced that Bertrand, the Chiado (Garrett Street) Lisbon bookshop, is the longest-running bookshop. Guinness World Records certified it. There’s an ad from Bertrand where one can read: “Founded in 1732. We witnessed 1 earthquake, 1 civil war, 9 kings, the assassination of a king, 16 presidents, 48 prime-ministers. 3 republics, 6 coup d'état, 2 world wars, the fall of the wall, the unification of Europe, the introduction of the Euro... and, we also sell books!”

The original bookshop was devastated by Lisbon’s 1755 big earthquake but the business was settled elsewhere and kept going. This house was a space of culture where many of our most important Portuguese writers met for a debate. Today is a regular bookshop where I went maybe a dozen times because if I go to Chiado – that Lisbon city area is called Chiado - I always get in to have a look. José Fontana, the founder of Portuguese socialist movement, brilliant activist and spokesman, killed himself inside tormented by his disease, tuberculosis. He was the bookshop manager and very young. Bertrand is present in a lot of Portuguese cities. I have a Bertrand client card for years as books are one of those things I can’t resist. I don't have a photo of the store to show you. But click on Bertrand Page to view an old sepia photo, today the store looks just the same on the outside. Long live Bertrand!

April 21, 2011

Mother's Day gifts suggestion list

Mothers Cards by ontopsell
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In Portugal, until a few years ago, Mother's Day was celebrated on December 8, Immaculate Conception Day and religious national holiday. Nowadays Mother's Day takes place on 1st Sunday of May. Anna Jarvis is the woman behind the official establishment of Mother's Day in the USA. Anna Jarvis lost her mother and become utterly depressed. She had then the idea of creating a Day dedicated to honoring all mothers. She campaigns for it writing letters to politicians, clergy members, business leaders, women's clubs and everyone she thought might have influence. In 1914 the U.S. Congress passed a Joint Resolution, and President Woodrow Wilson signed it, establishing Mother's Day. She was concerned over the commercialization of Mother's Day wanting it to be a day of sentiment, not profit.

1. Send your mother a card and a few nice words! You can also buy a beautiful flower to go with and deliver both when you visit her!
Mother's Day Greeting Card card

2. Offer your mother a looking good T-shirt in the color of her preference! Zazzle offers several models and several colors for each design.

Wild Rose necklace

Abstract flower necklace

Silhouette Mother & Child Sterling Silver Necklace necklace

5. Offer your mother a useful mug! She can use it to drink coffee, tea or to keep her pens and pencils at her desk!
Perfect Mother Mugs mug
Perfect Mother Mugs by zazzleproducts1
Start selling my art online with zazzle.
6. Offer your mother one Recipe Binder because she's a kitchen Goddess...or any other binder where she can keep a diary or photos!
Custom Mom's Recipe Binder Scrapbook binder
Custom Mom's Recipe Binder Scrapbook by jamiecreates1
Browse other binders made on zazzle.com
Retro Floral Binder binder

April 20, 2011

Portugal has the sixth most beautiful café in the world: Café Majestic!

Portugal has got the Sixth most beautiful café in the world. It's Café Majestic! This is what UCITYGUDES - The ultimate travel guides - wrote about it: "It's in the country's second city (Oporto) that we find the most stunning of all cafés in the nation and one of the most attractive in the world. From its façade to its interior, Café Majestic remains a beautiful setting for cultural events, making it more than just a tourist attraction. It continues to live up to its name with a wonderful Belle Epoque atmosphere in its main room and attractive winter garden which have guaranteed it a spot in every café-themed coffee table book." Here's the list.

1 - Café New York, Budapest

2 - Café Florian, Veneza

3 - Café Central, Viena

4 - Café Imperial, Praga

5 - Café de la Paix, Paris

6 - Café Majestic, Porto

7 - Café Confeitaria Colombo, Rio de Janeiro

8 - Caffé Gambrinus, Nápoles

9 - Café Tortoni, Buenos Aires

10 - Caffé Greco, Roma

Japan Earthquake Fund Relief

From Zazzle, you and me, to Japan: some money and emotional support!

Just read this at Zazzle blog:

"The accountants did the final tally and the check is ready. Thanks to the efforts of everyone in the Zazzle Community that helped build the Support Earthquake Relief in Japan Store, we all donated $12,507.34 to the Japanese Red Cross to aid recovery efforts following the terrible earthquake and tsunami. It was a true worldwide effort. Zazzle created the store and an official shirt, Sellers created their own special products and donated royalties, and customers donated by purchasing all of these items. We at Zazzle would just like to say thank you to everyone! It was great to see folks from every corner of the globe helping those suffering in Japan, and we are proud that the power of the Zazzle platform was able to make it possible. Of course, recovery efforts in Japan are not over. For those wishing to continue to assist in the ongoing recovery efforts, we encourage you to visit the Japanese Red Cross and donate. "

Will Algarve be your Summer travel destination?

When I have some money to spend I always go to Central Algarve, in the south, for a short Summer holiday cos I love a good warm beach. It’s the most geared up Portugal’s region for the tourist individual. If you visit you’ll find the largest concentration of hotels and apartments in the country and also a vast selection of sporting and leisure activities like golf. But it's the warm weather of the south that makes all the difference. Central Algarve in the west, it goes from Faro to Portimão, along 45 miles. District’s capital is Faro and that’s where foreigners land at Faro’s airport. For years I’ve been spending summer holidays at Armação de Pêra. Pêra is the name of a small village and Armação is what we call to industry of making boats. It’s 40-minute car drive from the airport. A few years ago I took a boat trip along the coastline to watch more closely the amazing sandstone caves, rock formations, and many grottos along the way. I was a bit scared on the rocking boat but it was cool. You get pretty hotels on the cliffs, a large strand of 3 km of sand, fishermen community still doing traditional fishing and nearby attractions for kids like Aqualand, a family water fun park. You’ll find also plenty of seafood and fish restaurants and traditional and international style restaurants. It’s a beach for families and kids, friendly and safe. Last year I went to Praia da Rocha for the first time and loved it. It’s the second resort of Algarve. I’m not into big just because it’s big. In fact, I do not like the coastline full of high-rising buildings. I was lucky and had marvelous weather last August, very warm waters, and loved to walk along the wet sand in the morning and dining out at night. There’s plenty of nightlife with bars and a casino too! It is particularly popular with British and Irish holidaymakers; I was staying very close to an Irish bar. I also loved to promenade along the beach avenue flanked with store and hotels on one side, on the other you'll get the blue ocean spreading till the horizon and down below the sand flocked with people. As the beach is enormous I never felt packed even if I was there in August. To my surprise, it was very clean all the time. Dramatic rocky outcrops and red and yellow sandstone rock stacks gave the name to the beach- Praia da Rocha, meaning Beach of the rocks. You have to go through a lot of steps to reach the sand but once you reach it you’ll like it. Not very good to carry children up and down those stairs but the sea is very warm and calm, ideal for kids. I was thinking of going back this Easter holiday with my sister but she canceled the trip as she got sick. Fortunately, the weather isn’t good so I’m not very disappointed. I live on a beach too in central Portugal. Weather conditions are very different here – cold water, windy afternoons and not a quite sea most of the days! Even the light is different! But I enjoyed it also. So, if you’re considering a Summer beach travel destination, Portugal offers cheap accommodation, good food, nice people and excellent weather in the south. And you can buy a tote bag and a matching Mermaid t-shirt for your kids to wear on the beach at my Zazzle store!

April 9, 2011

Cats and gifts - a purrrfect combination!

See other throw pillows.

This is a post for cat lovers. Recently, I mean, last year, I fell in love with cats and since then I've been reading a lot about this incredible animal. In this sellection, I am trying to show different styles and different kinds of approaches to the subject. There's traditional, there's digital, vintage posters revival, photographs... Zazzle is full of wonderful artists. What's your favorite Zazzle product? Are you a feline lover? Enjoy.

This post was refreshed in 2015

Edgar Poet Spiral Notebook
Edgar Poet Spiral Notebook by sandygrafik
Check out more Edgar allan poe Notebooks at Zazzle
Cat Lady Plate
Cat Lady Plate by origamiprints
View Black Plates online at zazzle
Santa Cat Dinner Plates
Santa Cat Dinner Plates by Kakigori
Browse for another plate at Zazzle
cat dinner plates
cat dinner plates by Wizkeit
Browse more Cat Plates at Zazzle
Psychedelic Cheshire Cat Round Pillow
Psychedelic Cheshire Cat Round Pillow by Shaninja
See more Psychedelic Round Pillows at zazzle.com
Plate | Sphynx Cat Angel
Plate | Sphynx Cat Angel by Angelcards
Create unique custom plates online at Zazzle.
Christmas Cute Cat Grocery Bags
Christmas Cute Cat Grocery Bags by partymonster
View more Christmas party Reusable Grocery Bag at zazzle.com
Pink Cats Spiral Notebooks
Pink Cats Spiral Notebooks by FunArtShop
The best place for custom notebooks printing online at zazzle.com
The Moon Cat pillow Round Pillow
The Moon Cat pillow Round Pillow by PaintinginCircles
Look at Cat Round Pillows online at Zazzle.com
Cat and Fairy Notebook
Cat and Fairy Notebook by Catchthemoon
Look at other Cat Notebooks at zazzle.com
Folk Art Santa & Kittens Christmas plate
Folk Art Santa & Kittens Christmas plate by FABTIES
See other Christmas Plates at zazzle

beautiful cat design round pillow
beautiful cat design round pillow by 3fabstudio
Check out more Cat Round Pillows at Zazzle
White Ceramic Maneki Neko Throw Pillow
White Ceramic Maneki Neko Throw Pillow by nani_nani
Browse more Maneki neko Pillows at Zazzle
Cats and fruit party plates
Cats and fruit party plates by wallpapershop
Check out other Animal Plates at zazzle.com
Big Black Cat Nap Throw Pillow (Pumpkin)
Big Black Cat Nap Throw Pillow (Pumpkin) by LELDesigns
Check out more Halloween Pillows at Zazzle